On the road to Cannes, a meeting with Kristen Stewart. The Twilight star is already the new protagonist in a new franchise: Snow White and the Huntsman, a dark take on the famous fairytale, out this July. Between playing Bella and Snow White, the 22 y.o actress, role model of millions of girls around the world, has taken a new challenge with herself with an adult role: she will be in competition at the Cannes Festival with On the Road, a movie adaptation of the Beat-generation defining novel, directed by Walter Salles.
“That of Marylou is a huge role, without boundaries” says Kristen. A black leather jacket, white shirt and clean jeans, Kristen speaks slowly, she often stops to correct herself, as if any concept was important and difficult for her. Marylou is the sexy and uninhibited wife of Dean Moriarty, friend and mentor of Sal Paradise, Kerouac’s alter-ego.
Kristen, On The Road is a special movie for you.
“It was one of the first adult books I read. The first to completely conquer, almost obsessed me. It opened doors and new horizons for me, it taught me to go and discover more about myself. Besides, I love diaries, chronicles, real-life stories. Especially when it’s told by an outsider’s point of view. OTR is not “just a novel”, it’s an ensemble of reality and fiction, a mix between what actually happened and Jack’s point of view. I like the truthfulness of characters, the amount of info about them that’s arrived to us, untouched.”
What kind of challenge it was for you, playing Marylou?
I had to go and explore emotional territories where I had never been before. I had to push forward, find some thing inside of me that I didn’t even know I had. She’s a limitless character, a woman capable of unique types of relationship. It’s a character I really admire but it doesn’t belong to me. Unlike Marylou, I am incapable of living things in such a spontaneous and extreme way, happy to live the moment. I am more like Sam, I like to watch this happen. Being part of this movie was living in my favourite book. I’ll always be grateful to Walter for this.
Are you excited or worried about going to Cannes?
Both. More like happy, because Cannes is the most important place for a movie and I’m going with a team of which I’m proud. The thing I like the most about my job is the sense of being a team, the creative energy you share when you’re on set. It’s an intimate feeling, even physical. Then millions of people watch it, and it’s not personal and intimate anymore, but something of that energy remains. I base my decisions upon that.
Is it the same when it comes to big franchises?
I have a big fanbase, it’s true. But I base my choices solely following my instinct. I claim the purety of the outsider, the lack of calculations. It was like this for Twilight, and for SWATH too.
You are a role model for millions of teenagers: do you feel the responsibility of that?
People choose their role models by themselves. I am honest with myself and I’m not ashamed of anything I’ve done. You shouldn’t plan of giving a certain image of yourself to other people. You should live your life, your experiences, your job. The people take what they want.
When you’re on set, what do you usually do?
“I read a lot. I really like Henry Miller. Recently I read Moravia’s “Contempt”, then a watched a bit of the movie. I saw myself in the paranoia, the obsession of the protagonist, even though they’re not entirely mine. And, in my free time, I write. I’m not interested in fiction: I’m always looking for idea, sentences, or just simple words”
*Note some of this we may have heard before as it was probably conducted as a roundtable with multiple international journalist.